Pedal To The Metal. Headlamps Off.

Writing at The Intercept, Glenn Greenwald reports on an item from the collection of classified material leaked by Edward Snowden: a report on the ways that “Western intelligence agencies are attempting to manipulate and control online discourse with extreme tactics of deception and reputation-destruction”. I can’t say that any of it should come as a surprise, but it is hardly comforting.

What sort of a world do you imagine we will be living in, say, twenty years from now? As everything comes into increasing energetic collision with everything else, the solid world — from the books on your shelf, to the cash in your wallet, to everyday human contact — is vaporizing into a seething plasma of massless data, and there is no part of that world that is immune from scrutiny, manipulation, and continuous revision.

When I was at Singularity University a couple years ago, one of the lecturers said something to the effect of: “If you can see the road ahead of you, you aren’t going fast enough”. The audience — an impressive gathering of confident, high-IQ, risk-taking tech entrepreneurs from all over the world — loved it, and gave the remark some applause. I refrained.

Read the Greenwald article here.

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3 Comments

  1. JK says

    What sort of a world do you imagine we will be living in, say, twenty years from now?

    Depends I reckon – on whether a bunch of “fruitcakes and loonies and closet racists” manage to manage it.

    (Duff’s on holiday and I guess I’d have to say I’m missing the old buzzard.)

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/23/us-eu-election-farage-idUSBREA4M0MQ20140523

    Posted May 23, 2014 at 1:55 pm | Permalink
  2. Scary, yet fascinating Malcolm and despite complex manipulative programs the spirit of individuals, with that uniquely human quality, humor, still shines through in this world. A comment at the end of that article is more memorable than all the charts and statistics.

    DIogenes
    03 Mar 2014 at 5:43 pm

    Reading these comments is fascinating. We have an intersection of
    1 People trying to get out the truth or find it
    2 Paranoid lunatics basking in justifications for their paranoid world view
    3 Government agents posing as 1 and 2
    4 Anarchists posing as 3
    5 Government agents posing as 4
    6 The rest of us
    7 Lunatics and government agents posing as the rest of us

    If the effort is to neutralize the internet as a force to mitigate government power, the strategy is working. How can it not? Truffers, pseudo-truffers, lunatics, pseudo-lunatics, anarchists, pseudo-anarchists. The MSM is owned by the government, now so is the internet. Next we will find out that Greenwald is a CIA agent, who’s actually a double agent working for Putin, who is working for the Chinese. Then we’ll find out that the CIA spread that rumor and falsified the information to defange Greenwald.

    Who wants pizza?

    Posted May 23, 2014 at 2:23 pm | Permalink
  3. Disinformation triumphs, 30 years after Orwell.

    Posted May 24, 2014 at 11:10 am | Permalink